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Greenbrier Lake won't be stocked with trout

March 02, 1999

Greenbrier lakeBy BRUCE HAMILTON / Staff Writer

photo: RIC DUGAN / staff photographer




Hundreds of area fishermen kick off trout season with a visit to Greenbrier Lake in late March.

They can forget it this year.

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The Maryland Department of Natural Resources State Forest and Park Service said Monday the lake will not be stocked this spring because the water level is too low.

"It's definitely going to put a hurt on the local population," said Russell Boback, a Greenbrier State Park ranger.

State Forest and Park Service workers drew down the lake in September so they could replace a valve that controls water flow. The original 25-year-old valve wasn't working.

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Work at the 43-acre man-made lake off U.S. 40 east was completed three days before Christmas, said Al Preston, assistant manager of the park.

Preston was relying on spring thaws and rains to fill up the lake, but "It's just been so dry," he said.

As a result, the spring-fed lake is only about 35 percent full, according to DNR officials.

The DNR Fisheries Service generally stocks the lake with about 6,000 trout between late February and early May, according to Boback.

But because of the low water level, such a large number of fish would have difficulty surviving, he said.

Boback estimated that the first weekend of trout season typically brings more than 1,000 anglers to the lake.

"On that first morning, they're shoulder to shoulder," he said.

The park's water supply and other water-related recreation at the park could be affected if dry conditions continue, according to DNR.

Visitors can call 301- 791-4767 in advance for updates.

Several other local lakes will be stocked for trout season, including Cunningham Falls State Park lake, Big Pool Lake at Fort Frederick and Blairs Valley Lake.

Trout season opens March 27, but Greenbrier State Park will not be open early.

Preston said he hopes the state will stock the lake later.

"It just depends on the precipitation," he said.

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